GEORGE JONES > Hits Then ‘Til Now: Legends of American

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

George Jones holds the distinction of having more country hits than anyone else. He’s been making records for more than 50 years, as both a solo artist and as a duet partner with Ray Charles, Merle Haggard, and ex-wife Tammy Wynette.Label: TIME LIFE
[RATING: 4]

George Jones holds the distinction of having more country hits than anyone else. He’s been making records for more than 50 years, as both a solo artist and as a duet partner with Ray Charles, Merle Haggard, and ex-wife Tammy Wynette. He also used to have a reputation for showing up late for his concerts-if he bothered to show up at all. The three-disc box Hits Then ‘Til Now includes 60 songs from Jones’ long career-some of them are great, some of them are lousy, many of them are classics. Jones was nearly rockabilly when he got his start in 1955 with “Why Baby Why.” By the time he got around to recording “She Thinks I Still Care” and “Walk Through This World With Me” in the ‘60s, he was a country-music king. Jones’ voice-a mix of isolation, heartbreak, and booze-soaked resignation-was well-suited to the schmaltz he made in Nashville during the late-70s and ‘80s. He even made “He Stopped Loving Her Today,” an otherwise maudlin tale of a guy who finally got over an ex when he died, one of country’s all-time greatest songs. Hits Then ‘Til Now, like Jones, has its flaws. But it’s also a thorough survey of what made the guy a legend.

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